The Garden Guide

Book: A treatise on the theory and practice of landscape gardening, adapted to North America,1841
Chapter: Section IV. Deciduous Ornamental Trees

Weeping willow in landscape gardening

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In landscapes, the Weeping willow is peculiarly expressive of grace and softness. Although a highly beautiful tree, great care must be used in its introduction, to preserve the harmony and propriety of the whole; as nothing could be more strikingly inappropriate than to intermix it frequently with trees expressive of dignity or majesty, as the oak, etc.; where the violent contrast exhibited in the near proximity of the two opposite forms, could only produce discord. The favorite place, where it is most true to nature and itself, is near water, where - "it dips its pendent boughs, stooping as if to drink." COWPER. There, when properly introduced, not in too great abundance, hanging over some rustic bridge, or cool jutting spring, and supported, and brought into harmony with surrounding vegetation by such other graceful and light-sprayed trees as the Birch and Weeping elm, its effect is often surpassingly beautiful and appropriate. There it is one of the first in the vernal season to burst its buds, and mirror its soft green foliage in the flood beneath, and one of the last in autumn to yield its leafy vesture to the chilling frosts, or fitful gusts of approaching winter.